If you ask someone what keeps them up at night, you’re sure to get a telling response. It’s a great question to ask. It quickly gets to the root of a person’s deepest and most frequent concerns. Meeting planners encounter many types of tasks in their work. That makes the list of possible problems long indeed.
The Events Industry Council delegates, a group containing CEOs of more than 30 industry-leading associations that represent more than 103,500 individuals and 19,5000 firms and properties involved in the industry, answered this question in their latest survey. The results were illuminating. Not only were trends and changes in the industry revealed, but even some political anxiety showed up. Overall, these five trends emerged from their varied responses.
1. Safety and security
A variety of safety concerns arose—anything from natural disasters to terrorism. Planners are responsible for the well-being of their attendees. It’s the most important aspect of an event. So it makes sense that ensuring safety was on the forefront of their minds.
To help ease this anxiety, the International Association for Venue Managers is working on establishing a safety and security guideline for convention centers to meet Department of Homeland Security accreditation. The Events Industry Council also has their own APEX initiative, which was created to provide event professional resources for becoming more informed about safety concerns.
2. Workforce issues
This will always be a relevant topic. As new generations enter the workforce, it keeps getting reshaped. Maintaining good working relationships between baby boomers and millennials is often a concern. Many planners also worry about finding millennials with the right skills to succeed in this profession.
3. Advancing the event profession
The value of your job is entirely contingent on the state of your industry. As the economy fluctuates, technology advances and other changes occur, some planners are concerned about staying relevant.
4. Impact of the U.S. political climate
It seems that most people in the United States are concerned about this heated topic. For meeting planners, this becomes particularly concerning when questions about the global perception of the United States arise. U.S. legislative action can impact various event destinations’ rise and fall in popularity, as well as which attendees show up.
5. Mergers and acquisitions
For businesses in general, mergers and acquisitions are on the upswing. And this has definitely made its way to the events industry. It seems that everywhere, these changes are impacting major players, which in turn impacts the entire event planning industry. One topic of concern for planners is that organization memberships decrease as mergers and acquisitions increase.